What is a jinbei?

A jinbei is a traditional Japanese garment set, consisting of a loose top with wide sleeves and a wrap-around front fastened by two fabric ties (one inside and one out), and matching shorts. It has a similar appearance to a kimono, but is much lighter weight and more practical for everyday wear.

In Japan jinbei are worn by both children and adults, male and female, and can worn in the house or outside for everyday wear or for special occasions. Worn on its own a typical jinbei is ideal for warm weather, since it is light and loose and easy to move around in. On cooler days we often match our jinbei tops with some thicker trousers (such as our loose fit denim ones), or put tights underneath the shorts, and often a bodysuit or vest under the top. The fabrics for our jinbei sets vary from light-weight cotton (as is most common in Japan, and ideal for summer), to heavier denim, which we find well suited to unpredictable British weather, and the demands of toddlers and pre-schoolers on the move.

What is batik?

Batik is a method of dyeing fabric (usually cotton or a cotton mix) with wax blocks, using a technique developed in ancient times, and used for centuries in many different parts of Asia & Africa. Batik fabric from Indonesia, where it is a highly developed industry, was introduced to Europe via Dutch merchants, and was also sold by the Dutch in West Africa, where many Indonesian designs became very popular, as well as new ones being developed to suit local tastes. The idea that the technique was introduced to Africans by Dutch colonialists is something of a myth though, since very similar processes already existed across the continent, and had done long before the days European colonialism. What is true however is that what many people call ‘African print’ fabric is very much the result of cultural cross-pollination, with the lively trade between Asia, Africa & Europe giving rise to many innovations and new fashions over the years.

For more information on the technique and history of batik – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Batik

Are all your products machine washable?

Yes. All our garments can be machine washed at 30 degrees or washed by hand. You’re generally best washing like colours together, particularly when it comes to bolder colours, and especially for the first few washes. They can also all be ironed on a setting suitable for cottons. If you’re unsure about any aspect of the care of any of our garments please don’t hesitate to ask for advice! (+44 (0) 7786 362 916, OLALAchildrenswear@gmail.com).

Can I return something if it doesn’t fit?

Generally, yes. As long is it’s still in a saleable condition. Please see our Size guide page for more details.

How long will my order take to arrive?

If you’re buying stock items then we aim to send orders out in 1-2 working days. If you’re buying made to order products then the turnaround time will vary according to the size and complexity of the order, and availability of fabrics, but we typically aim to send custom orders with 12-14 days.

All stock is posted or couriered from Ramsgate, England. Delivery times will obviously vary according to where we’re sending to. If you’re in a hurry, please contact us and we’ll advise you as best we can (+44 (0) 7786 362 916, OLALAchildrenswear@gmail.com).

Do you make to order?

Yes we do. If you have a particular request please get in touch and we’ll do our best to help! (+44 (0) 7786 362 916, OLALAchildrenswear@gmail.com).

Do you sell jinbei tops and shorts separately?

Yes we do. Give us a call or send us a message (+44 (0) 7786 362 916, OLALAchildrenswear@gmail.com) and tell us which ones you’re interested in and we can give you a price.

There’s a design in one of your photos / flyers / on Instagram that I like, but it isn’t listed in your online shop; can I get one like that?

It might be possible… Unfortunately some of our fabrics are only available in limited quantities, so it isn’t always possible to re-stock a design after it sells out; but if you let us know which one it is you’re interested in then we’ll do our best. Give us a call or an email (+44 (0) 7786 362 916, OLALAchildrenswear@gmail.com) and we’ll try to help!